New to Ranching? Here’s the Perfect Cattle Handling System for You.

New to Ranching? Here’s the Perfect Cattle Handling System for You.

By Kaydence Michalsky

Starting up a cattle operation, no matter how small, can be intimidating. Every day brings its own challenges, whether it’s dealing with unpredictable weather, ever-changing market prices, or finding cattle equipment that gives you confidence and peace of mind when working cattle.

For decades, cattle equipment companies have tailored their equipment to ranchers who run hundreds of head of cattle. This leaves operations with small herds of 10 to 20 head trying to make-do with equipment meant for much bigger operations, which can lead to unnecessary expenses and valuable space being taken up. Using a system that is too large for the needs of your operation leaves more room for error and injury. However, with a cattle handling system designed specifically for 10 to 20 head of cattle, new or small-scale ranchers can streamline their operation and ensure safety throughout.

Often, the livestock industry focuses on serving the needs of large-scale cattle ranches, which can leave newcomers and small operations feeling left behind and frustrated. It needs to be remembered that small-scale ranches face different challenges such as less access to resources and manpower to help manage livestock efficiently. Handling even a small amount of cattle can be dangerous, especially if you have limited help, so it’s key to ensure you have proper cattle equipment.

This is where Arrowquip’s 10 and 20 Head Starter Cattle Handling Systems come in. These systems are specifically designed to help solve some of the challenges small-scale ranchers face on a day-to-day basis at an attainable price. By offering affordable, easy-to-use, and safe solutions, small-scale and new ranchers can handle their cattle with confidence. 

Advanced Efficiency No Matter the Size of Your Cattle Operation

For ranchers who are working to build up their herd and have less than 20 head of cattle, these small starter systems are the perfect addition. These systems have been designed by Arrowquip’s cattle handling experts using the same equipment that many have come to love, including Arrow Corral Panels, gates, and the all-new Arrowlock cattle chutes, to increase efficiency on your ranch and make cattle handling easier than ever. Within both the 10 and 20-Head Starter System families, there are three designs to help cater to the unique needs of every operation: Basic, Essential, and Deluxe.

The Basic designs feature corral panels and gates that are placed in a way that works with cattle’s natural instincts to move along curves. Cattle will follow the curve into a panel force that will then guide them into the Arrowlock 55 Series Squeeze Chute, making the process of handling cattle faster and easier than before. 

A step up from the Basic design is the Essential Starter System. This system features everything in the Basic design with the addition of an alley made using cattle corral panels and a rolling alley gate that can be used from either side to encourage better flow into the chute.
For ranchers  looking for a more advanced cattle handling experience, the 10 and 20 Head Deluxe Cattle Handling Systems are the perfect solution. The Deluxe system is equipped with more corral panels for more space and the panel alley is replaced with an 8’ Easy Flow Adjustable Cattle Alley for more efficient movement into the chute. Additionally, the cattle chute in these systems has been upgraded to the Arrowlock 75 Series which is equipped with a vet cage that allows the operator more access to the animal while in the chute.

Tailored Cattle Handling Systems for Your Herd Size

If you’re just starting out and can count the amount of cattle you have on less than two hands, then the 10-Head Basic Starter Cattle Handling System will be the perfect fit for you. However, don’t let the size of the system stop you from expanding your herd. 

As a leader in cattle equipment, Arrowquip wants to ensure that you can have a system that will work for you 100% of the time. This is why all their systems are completely customizable and all components can be added or removed with ease. Want to increase efficiency and upgrade your cattle chute from manual to hydraulic? No problem! Need a bigger system? Easily add as many corral panels as you need using the panel connectors. 

It’s important to ensure you have equipment that allows you to work and handle your cattle safely and efficiently no matter the size of your herd. By offering affordable, easy-to-use, and safe solutions, small-scale and new producers will be able to handle their cattle with confidence. For more information, or to get in touch with a Livestock Expert, visit www.arrowquip.com.

Pre-weaned calf deworming study showed improved weight-gain, added value

Pre-weaned calf deworming study showed improved weight-gain, added value

By John Lovett, University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture, Arkansas Agricultural Experiment Station

A recent Arkansas Agricultural Experiment Station study showed deworming calves about two months before weaning improved weight gain and added value for producers.

Daniel Rivera, associate professor of animal science, said the weight gain translated to adding about $13 of value per head of cattle 21 days after weaning. With roughly 400,000 calves in Arkansas at 400 pounds or less, deworming before weaning could result in an additional $5.12 million to Arkansas beef cattle producers.

“Parasite burden can have a negative effect on performance,” Rivera said. “This can lead to reduced weight gain and other effects that are more difficult to measure, like immune response and vaccine efficacy. Some of these losses might be visible to producers, who will either sell their cattle at weaning or after a preconditioning program.”

A preconditioning program is a period, typically a minimum of 45 days, used to build the health status of a weaned calf before sale.

Rivera said most cattle ranchers usually do not handle their animals until they wean them. However, he had read studies that suggested pre-weaning management can have extended effects.

“I just wanted to see what the effect was, and we saw that small effect early on, but the fact that it carried through, even 56 days later, showed that some of these things that we do prior to weaning can have an impact later one,” Rivera said. “This, surprisingly, was one of them.”

The added labor for deworming pre-weaned calves, Rivera said, could be a full-day job for cow-calf producers in Arkansas and the cost of labor would need to be considered by the producer to determine if the process is right for them.

The calves dewormed before weaning averaged 4.5 pounds heavier than the control group that did not receive a dewormer before being weaned. That translated to $10.25 in value added per head at weaning time and $12.80 per head 21 days after weaning. The values are based on the Dec. 11, 2023, Arkansas Department of Agriculture market report for a 500-pound calf at $2.51 per pound. Calves have increased in value since then, with the late February-early March 2024 market report offering $3.04 per pound for 500-pound calves.

Finding answers

The study was conducted near Hope at the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture’s Southwest Research and Extension Center. Rivera is director of the facility and conducts research for the Division of Agriculture’s research arm, the Arkansas Agricultural Experiment Station.

For the study, Rivera’s team randomly assigned calves to one of two groups. The calves in one group received a deworming treatment 60 days before the set date in October when they would be weaned. The other group was the control and did not receive deworming treatment before weaning. For the experiment, all calves were weighed and then either given a dewormer or not based on their assigned group. At weaning time, all the calves in the study were dewormed and vaccinated, including those already dewormed before being weaned.

Researchers took blood samples from the calves on their second round of vaccinations three weeks after weaning. The pre-weaned dewormed calves still had a 5.5-pound weight advantage over those that did not get a deworming treatment before being weaned.

A follow-up study will take place this summer at the center. Rivera’s team is analyzing the blood samples from the calves to see if pre-weaned, dewormed calves have different antibody levels than the control group. Antibodies are proteins the immune system produces to protect the body from illness.

“One of the things that happens when you have a parasitic infection is that the body starts to fight that infection and sometimes resources aren’t available to mount other immune responses,” Rivera said. “One of our lines of thinking is that if we have this worm load on these calves, that may have a negative impact on their antibody production.”

Merck donated the dewormer used in the study. Use of a product name does not imply endorsement by the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture.

To learn more about Division of Agriculture research, visit the Arkansas Agricultural Experiment Station website: https://aaes.uada.edu. Follow on Twitter at @ArkAgResearch. To learn more about the Division of Agriculture, visit https://uada.edu/. Follow us on Twitter at @AgInArk. To learn about extension programs in Arkansas, contact your local Cooperative Extension Service agent or visit www.uaex.uada.edu.

About the Division of Agriculture

The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture’s mission is to strengthen agriculture, communities, and families by connecting trusted research to the adoption of best practices. Through the Agricultural Experiment Station and the Cooperative Extension Service, the Division of Agriculture conducts research and extension work within the nation’s historic land grant education system.

The Division of Agriculture is one of 20 entities within the University of Arkansas System. It has offices in all 75 counties in Arkansas and faculty on five system campuses.

The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture offers all its Extension and Research programs and services without regard to race, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin, religion, age, disability, marital or veteran status, genetic information, or any other legally protected status, and is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer.

NCBA Urges USDA to Reverse Decision to End Reporting of Critical Cattle Industry Data

NCBA Urges USDA to Reverse Decision to End Reporting of Critical Cattle Industry Data

Article courtesy of National Cattlemen’s Beef Association

Today, the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) criticized the U.S. Department of Agriculture National Agricultural Statistics Services’ (USDA-NASS) decision to cancel the July Cattle Report and discontinue the County Estimates for Crops and Livestock, among other changes. These reports provide critical data and the decision to end them is completely misguided.

“It is disingenuous for the same agency which touts its commitment to transparency in livestock markets to arbitrarily cease publication of reports which provide just that. While it may be politically expedient to blame appropriators in Congress for today’s decision, cattle producers know better than to believe discontinuing a handful of reports will result in substantive cost savings for the Department,” said NCBA Vice President of Government Affairs Ethan Lane. “NCBA calls on USDA-NASS to immediately reverse this decision and continue delivering on its stated mission of providing timely, accurate, and useful statistics in service to U.S. agriculture.”

The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) has represented America’s cattle producers since 1898, preserving the heritage and strength of the industry through education and public policy.  As the largest association of cattle producers, NCBA works to create new markets and increase demand for beef.  Efforts are made possible through membership contributions. To join, contact NCBA at 1-866-BEEF-USA or membership@beef.org.

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